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VAM Scores

Value Added Model (VAM) scores are derived from Florida Comprehensive Achievement Test (FCAT) Grades 4 through 10 Reading scores and from FCAT Grades 4 through 8 Mathematics scores. Only those individuals employed in a Florida public school or charter school who were teaching an FCAT-assessed grade level or course would be assigned a VAM score. VAM scores measure the impact of a teacher (program completer) on student learning by controlling for other factors that may impact the learning process and by controlling for the influence of differences among the entering classes so that schools and teachers do not have advantages or disadvantages simply as a result of being assigned to a certain school or to a certain class within a school. A score of 0 indicates that students performed no better or no worse than expected based on the factors in the model which are delineated below. A positive score indicates that students performed better than expected. A negative score indicates that students performed worse than expected. Individual teacher scores are expressed in terms of Developmental Scale Score points:

  • 0 = good, or predicted
  • >0 = better than predicted
  • <0 = less (worse) than predicted

Our sample sizes tend to be small and do not reflect the actual number of completers in the field. It should be noted that sometimes Reading teachers teach Math and therefore receive Math VAM scores, and sometimes Math teachers teach Reading and therefore receive Reading VAM scores.

Student Characteristics identified to “level the playing field”

  • up to two prior years of achievement scores
  • the number of subject-relevant courses enrolled in
  • Students with Disabilities Status
  • English Language Learner Status
  • Gifted Status
  • Attendance
  • Mobility (number of times student changed schools)
  • Difference from modal age in grade as an indicator of retention
  • class size
  • homogeneity of students' entering test scores

The VAM data are used as one measure of our completers' impact on P – 12 learning. These data are also analyzed to determine if there is stability of measurement, i.e., consistency of results from year to year.

Yearly VAM Scores